I’ve just started my winter semester at Seneca and in one of my classes we are learning to use tablets to digitally paint. For our first assignment we were given a set of images to paint through the use of Wacom tablets and clipping masks.
This is my first time using a tablet and to be completely honest, I’m terrible at it. Now don’t get me wrong the tablet may take some getting use to but it is extremely fun to use, especially with the pen pressure.
I intend to practice painting all of the images my professor supplied to me but in this post I’ll be showcasing my painted “bear pear” (that’s what the file is called, I don’t know what it is either ha).
Before I started painting anything I made a custom brush to make the painting look a little more unique. I did making this shape and then selecting it with the marquee tool, defining it as a brush, then playing around with the settings.
After I finished customizing my brush I started my painting by changing the colour of the outlines by using a clipping mask (A really cool technique I learned last week). This is where I made my first mistake. I was pretty excited to start painting right away so I didn’t bother planning out a colour pallet. It wasn’t really an issue at the start but you’ll see how it caused issues later on. I thought that this adorable little creature looked like a squirrel (maybe it is a squirrel for all we know, Google has some pretty interesting image results for bear pear) so I decided to change the outline to a light brown. However, I decided to leave the eyes a solid black because I felt they looked very strange with colour.
Next I started filling in the fur. A habit I have is always trying something weird when ever I learn something new. I have no idea how to paint, no idea how much pressure to apply, and no idea what strokes to use. So I just made up my own technique (I like trying things myself first before looking up tutorials online). My technique consisted of randomly applying varying amounts of pressure throughout the process of painting his fur.
This is how it turned out. I think it looks a little weird, but in a good way.
This is where I began to see my mistake of not preparing a colour pallet beforehand. I originally coloured the area around the eyes with a shadow grey colour but It looked like it didn’t really belong so I tried numerous different colours until I found one that fit. This is also where I thought to myself that the colour I originally chose for the outlines kind of look distracting and don’t really fit in. To fix this I changed the colour like I did with the eye area so everything would match better.
While I was changing the outline colour I also decided to leave the tree branch colour how it was originally. Also if anyone is wondering about the yellow lines on the left; they are just references I use to decide where the light is coming from.
This is my finished product. I didn’t have to add in a background but I wanted too; plus my custom brush looks a little like a cloud so I thought that it would work out well. I I made the background a nice sky blue with a very light green gradient close to the bottom of the page. I also added some clouds behind the tree branch as well as a sun from the corner where my light references were. Hope you enjoyed this post and remember to check back for updates!
Also here is a before and after picture to see the contrast between the starting and finished product.
Also, before I end the post I would just like to leave a screen shot of how I like to set up my layers. This wasn’t a huge project so I didn’t use folders or groups.